Adding forward movement to walk cycle

pandorian

Member
I'm a Layout newbie, so please bear with me. I've created a sort of walk cycle which has my biped figure walking in place without moving any amount of distance. I'm having a difficult time trying to figure out how to edit this cycle so I can MOVE my figure a certain distance for each reframe without it interpolating while I'm doing so. In other words, after I created the walk cycle (which walks in place without traveling any distance) I wanted to show him using this walk cycle to actually move a particular distance on each keyframe. However every time I try to set up the distance movement in each keyframe, it automatically starts to interpolate movement. I know I'm missing something, I just can't seem to figure it out.
 

dpont

Member
One method is to use Null references for feet,
keyframing the skeleton root, hip or something in Z+ position (or Z-?)
for each frame, without interpolation.

At first frame, position the first Null to the foot not moving,
for each next frame move the root to keep this foot matching the Null,
until the foot leave the ground and the other foot become static,
use a second Null as reference for this second foot and continue keyframing
the root to keep the second foot matching the second Null,
go to the end of this cycle, set the root Z+ position to "Offset repeat".

Denis.
 

pandorian

Member
Maybe I'm not explaining myself properly, what I'm trying to convey is that I loaded a figure into Lightwave Layout, converted skelegons to bones, applied IK booster to the figure so I can manipulate the posing of the character, created nulls for each foot.

I then was messing around and created a preliminary walk cycle where the characters legs move in place but he does NOT travel any distance at all. When the walk cycle was finished I decided that I wanted to edit the walk cycle so that the character actually moves forward a certain amount of distance during the walk cycle rather than walking on the same exact spot throughout the walk cycle.

The only problem is that every time I try to move the figure a certain amount of distance to represent the distance traveled between each key frame of the walk cycle, the characters pose begins to change. I want to be able to set up traveled distance within this walk cycle but the pose keeps changing each time.
 
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ernpchan

Active member
It sounds like you need to move your controls forward in space instead of back and forth as if they're on a treadmill.
 

pandorian

Member
Okay, well, I'll have to research that extensively. As I stated, before, I'm NEW to Layout, so I'm not familiar with most of what you just stated. All the poses have already been set for the walk cycle for all the necessary frames, I just wanted to display the figure actually moving forward and/or up while performing the walk cycle.

I'm willing to scrap the walk cycle I just created and start it from scratch IF I can figure out how to actually show the character move forward and upward while I pose the figure in the various walk stages. Is there a specific order I need to follow or Should I create the walk path first (the route/path I wanted the figure to take) and THEN start manipulating poses on selected keyframes?
 

ernpchan

Active member
I'm not able to visualize this in my head, could you please elaborate in layman's terms?

You say your character is walking in place. So that means your leg controls are going forward and then back right? To translate forward through space it means that your controls need to continue moving forward. To demonstrate this just walk forward versus walk in place like on a treadmill.
 

jwiede

Electron wrangler
You say your character is walking in place. So that means your leg controls are going forward and then back right? To translate forward through space it means that your controls need to continue moving forward. To demonstrate this just walk forward versus walk in place like on a treadmill.

To clarify, by "controls" he's referring to the character rig's foot placement / IK goal nulls for L and R foot. Walking in place, they'll just slide back and forth over the same region, but when moving forward/backwards, those nulls/goals need to actually move forward/backward along the ground.

When you created the walk cycle poses, you did so for the legs by moving the various target nulls/IK goals to control the legs (the legs are IK-driven, correct?)? Those are the things which need to continue moving along the path forward, instead of just sliding back and forth over the same area.

When you're doing a moving character, you use the IK-driven leg targets to control the movement, while posing the FK-driven arms to go along with the movement, if that makes sense. You shouldn't be "posing" the legs by moving their bones, etc. if the rig provides IK-driven goals for the legs/feet, that's the IK's job.

Without seeing the actual rig in question, it's really difficult to help in this. Can you upload a scene demonstrating the issue (incl. rig)? If you're not allowed to upload the character mesh but can upload just the rig, that's probably enough. If you cannot upload the rig either, then it's going to be difficult for us to help other than to provide some tutorial references on doing LW walk cycles.
 
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pandorian

Member
Thanks for the explanation, it makes perfect sense, I wasn't even considering that approach until you mentioned it. It definitely clears up a few of the question marks for me.

My concern was more with physically moving the character a certain distance and key framing it so the walk cycle showed actual distance walked rather than walking in place (as on a treadmill) HOWEVER, my (Newbie thought) was hoping to have him travel a specified distance without his pose changing so that the new key frame would interpolate through the distance traveled after I posed him again. The problem was each time I moved him a certain distance, the pose kept changing so that plan wasn't the right approach.

The problem may be with the rig, when I push him along the legs react to the first step but then both legs just keep dragging along behind the body.
 

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